Dec. 4, 2005
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Junior Alicia Gladden had 12 rebounds and 12 points for her first season double-double and freshman Mara Freshour racked up a career and game-best 16 points, including four three-pointers, to lead Florida State (6-1) to an 81-49 victory against UCF (1-5) Sunday afternoon at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
FSU shot a blistering 51.6 percent from the field (33-64) and 53.3 percent from beyond the arc (8-15) in the 32-point winn and outrebounded the Golden Knights by a 44-24 margin. With the win, the Seminoles rolled to their fifth straight victory since suffering a two-point loss to Washington in the second game of the season.
“I was just pleased with our rebounding effort,” FSU head coach Sue Semrau said. “The way we came out, not only in the first half but also the second half, and rebounded the basketball was one of the biggest differences in the game. It gave us extra possessions on the offensive end. Really, on both ends of the floor, I thought we played a complete basketball game this afternoon.”
Strong outside shooting kept the Golden Knights in the contest through the early portions of the first half and they trailed by just three points (16-13) at the 12:24 mark until Freshour entered the game and went to work. Back-to-back three-pointers by Freshour was the beginning of the end, as the shots jump-started a 15-0 FSU run over the next five minutes, giving the Seminoles a 31-13 lead. Florida State took a 14-point advantage into the locker room at the intermission, 39-25.
“Mara always has the green light,” Semrau said. “And the reason for it is she takes shots that she knows she can hit. They’re on balance. She’s open. She doesn’t force anything. I’m glad she took the green light today.”
A lay-up by senior LaQuinta Neely, who finished the day with 10 points and a career-high eight assists, at 16:27 in the second half handed Florida State a 20-point lead, 52-32, and the Seminoles never dipped lower as they raced away with their biggest win, by margin, this season.
“The best thing about our team today was that we let the game come to us and we didn’t try to force a lot of things,” Semrau said. “We are getting better at that on the offensive end of the floor. Mara, Tanae and Quint set the tone for that. They were the three guards that were in during that stretch. Alicia Gladden, I thought, came back and was more Alicia Gladden-like today.”
Florida State forced 17 UCF turnovers and held the Golden Knights to a low .385 field goal percentage.
Former Seminole Francine Houston was the lone Golden Knight to register double-figure points as she paced her team with 13 points. Houston, who came into the game averaging better than 20 points per game, was held scoreless in the second half.
FSU will hit the road for the first time this season and will travel to Tulsa for an 8:00 p.m. tilt with the Golden Hurricane.